Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
×
Crime Education

Can Online Reporting System Help Prevent Sexual Assaults On Campus? 234

jyosim writes Studies have shown that as many as 90 percent of campus rapes are committed by repeat offenders. A new system is designed to help identify serial assaulters, by letting students anonymously report incidents in order to look for patterns. But some argue that having the ability to report someone with just the click of a button may not be a good thing. Andrew T. Miltenberg, a New York lawyer who represents young men accused of sexual misconduct, says though the system seems well intended, he is concerned about dangers it may pose to students who are accused. 'We're all guilty of pressing send on an angry text or email that, had we had to put it into an actual letter and proofread, we probably wouldn't have sent,' he says.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Can Online Reporting System Help Prevent Sexual Assaults On Campus?

Comments Filter:
  • by Needs2BeSaid ( 4062029 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:32AM (#49484813) Homepage
    This will end very badly. Some students will use this as an attack and/or revenge tool against people they don't like. Anonymity plus rape accusations will equal lawsuits and destroyed lives.
    • by MitchDev ( 2526834 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:34AM (#49484827)

      No kidding, there needs to be accountability when you claim rape.

      The accusation, even when later proven false, destroys lives.

      • by NotDrWho ( 3543773 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:54AM (#49484983)

        Did anyone else see that report last weekend on "60 Minutes" about the Duke lacrosse coach? The guy wasn't even accused of a crime, only COACHING the men who were accused. And those men were all PROVEN INNOCENT. And even still, it cost the guy his job and still follows him to this day. And that was for coaching innocent men!

        That's the kind of damage even being ASSOCIATED with someone FALSELY ACCUSED of such a crime can do.

        • by jcr ( 53032 ) <jcr@@@mac...com> on Thursday April 16, 2015 @10:41AM (#49485471) Journal

          Worse than that, not one member of the Duke Lynch Mob has suffered any repercussions at all for their actions in demanding penalties against the accused before they were tried.

          -jcr

          • by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @11:05AM (#49485699)

            Worse than that, not one member of the Duke Lynch Mob has suffered any repercussions at all for their actions in demanding penalties against the accused before they were tried.

            In the UVa case, "Jackie" has faced no repercussions for making false accusations, and neither has Rolling Stone Magazine. At least Jackie tried to retract the story before it was published, but RS went ahead even though the "victim" no longer stood by the story. But more significantly, the University of Virginia has suffered no repercussions, despite taking drastic and broad punitive action against the fraternities, before doing any fact checking, much less waiting for a proper investigation.

        • by epyT-R ( 613989 )

          Welcome to the applied definitions of 'social justice', 'diversity' and 'equality.' What they say and what they do are complete opposites. It's newspeak to a T.

      • by jythie ( 914043 )
        On the other hand, often being an accuser destroys lives too.
        • by MitchDev ( 2526834 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @10:31AM (#49485361)

          Considering the penalty the accused faces, tough shit.

          Rape is a SERIOUS accusation, not to be made lightly.

        • by Cederic ( 9623 )

          This is one reason why rape victims get anonymity in the UK.

          This is reasonable, and public sentiment almost universally agrees with it.

          Someone found guilty in court of making a false accusation loses their anonymity, which reinforces the emphasis that the protection is for actual victims of violent sexual assault.

          Where the law goes wrong is that people accused do not also get anonymity. Witch hunts ensue. Lives get destroyed. It's a shitty situation.

    • by sd4f ( 1891894 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:40AM (#49484871)
      The problem is this whole beat up about campus rapes is blown way out of proportion. Case in point is the mattress carrying student, who now appears to just have been a woman scorned. So any systems are already being abused. If there's criminality going on, the only thing to do is go to the police. Police need to treat rape seriously, they generally do, but I get the feeling why certain people want this resolved outside police is because police will also treat fraudulent allegations of rape seriously.
    • by Snowgen ( 586732 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:46AM (#49484911) Homepage

      Anonymity plus rape accusations will equal lawsuits and destroyed lives.

      Actually, if you RTFA (I know, this is /., why would you?), you'll see that a student cannot accuse anonymously.

      They can either non-anonymously report the event to the authorities using the system, or they can record details but not report. If they choose to record, and someone else makes an accusation on the same person, the system will then allow the student to non-anonymously report.

      • by Needs2BeSaid ( 4062029 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:51AM (#49484953) Homepage
        Those anonymous "details" are accusations. A system like this will be used to intentionally harm people.
      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) *

        It's the same old battle of equally opposed forces. On the one hand we want victims to come forward, be listened to and get justice. On the other hand we want to protect the innocent and not have their lives ruined by false allegations or the investigation itself.

        To make matters more difficult many victims don't come forward if the are not guaranteed anonymity, or if they think they will be interrogated during the investigation or at trial. On the other hand we need to interrogate them to get to the truth o

    • I was thinking the same thing. Is there a way to report a false accusation too? Because I see a lot of innocent people having their lives destroyed by this. A rape or sex offender accusation today is like being labeled a witch in medieval Europe. It's straight to the gallows with you, innocent or not!

    • Those are the only people who are going to use it. If a victim is too afraid to report an assailant to the university for whatever reason, why would they use this app? It's not truly anonymous. The supposed appeal of the app is that it allows you to "log" an incident without reporting it, such that your contact info only gets forwarded to the university if someone else's report "matches" the same assailant. In other words, the app is going to go, "Hey, remember that guy who raped you last month? Guess what?
    • by xclr8r ( 658786 )
      Student body should show how this tool will be abused. Easily pick a target that is ridiculous (like the school mascot, upstanding adminstrator, or this program's coordinator) and spam it with blatantly false accusations. Point will be made rather quickly.
    • ARE YOUR CLASSMATES JEW-^h^h^h COMMU-^h^h^h^h^h RAPISTS? Don't delay, speak out today! Report suspected sedi-^h^h^h^h sexual assaulters to Big Brother! Remember citizens, it is for YOUR protection!

    • ARE YOUR CLASSMATES JEW-^h^h^h COMMU-^h^h^h^h^h RAPISTS? Don't delay, speak out today! Report suspected sedi -^h^h^h^h sexual assaulters to Big Brother! Remember citizens, it is for YOUR protection!

  • by Ol Olsoc ( 1175323 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:40AM (#49484865)
    If you thought swatting was bad, just wait until this one gets going.
  • by nimbius ( 983462 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:43AM (#49484885) Homepage

    some argue that having the ability to report someone with just the click of a button may not be a good thing.

    No, you dont understand. This is the internet, but more importantly, its 4chan. I want you to envision a storm of millions of reports, hundreds of millions even, of the same perpetrator, Mooty McMootykins. He stands 21 inches tall and shoots cookies from his arse. The student attends $university and is majoring in hitler-did-nothing-wrong. Students should beware of a man dressed as a watermelon who propositions victims with "Has Anyone Really Been Far Even as Decided to Use Even Go Want to do Look More Like?" Students have reported that mcmootykins cannot be stopped because you cannot flim flam the zim zam. he also evades approach because you cant corner the dorner. each report ends confirming the students suspicion that the perpetrator suffers from gender ptsd caused by his planetkin alignment and inability to remove kebab.

  • by XxtraLarGe ( 551297 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:46AM (#49484903) Journal
    The way the whole campus rape thing is handled seems idiotic to me. Why is sexual assault an issue for colleges or universities to handle? IMHO, it should be a police matter. If a student reports that they were sexually assaulted to a college or university, the college or university should have to report it to the local authorities, instead of being handled internally.

    The most common reason I hear for not doing this is that the victim doesn't want their assailant to go to prison. Why? So they can continue raping other people? Chances are the victim isn't the rapists first victim, or if they were, they won't be the last. Suspending a rapist from school or making them transfer does not protect other people.

    The other problem I have with having colleges or universities handle this problem is that I've heard of several instances where there wasn't due diligence in fact finding, and there was a presumption of guilt against the alleged assailant. Let the justice system handle what the justice system was created for. Colleges & universities should stick to educating people and doing research, not adjudicating serious crimes.
    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) * <mojo@wo[ ]3.net ['rld' in gap]> on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:59AM (#49485021) Homepage Journal

      Colleges want students to feel like they are protecting them, that's why they have campus security. Students are consumers, they have a choice of where to go to college, and providing security is part of the offer.

      • Providing their own rent-a-cops is one thing. Performing their own investigations of major crimes is entirely another.

    • For some colleges, relying on local police instead of campus security would be a huge negative. The college I went to was in a bad neighborhood, but our campus was pretty safe. Generally, you could walk around the campus at night without any problem. Walk two feet off campus, though, and I couldn't guarantee your safety. The local police might have had a hand in this, but I doubt they kept only the college safe. More likely, it was campus security providing focused protection (of a kind that the surrou

    • I dislike the two-sytem status quo too.
    • by Livius ( 318358 )

      Universities are private property; the have duties to their staff, their customers, and to people who take up residence there.

      But they can find a role assisting law enforcement instead of being in their way.

  • Better (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Hevel-Varik ( 2700923 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @09:52AM (#49484957)

    Girls don't hang out with drunk men. Men don't hang out with drunk women. The standard behavior on a university campus invites sexual misbehavior. Mod me into oblivion.

    • And what happens when a sober woman hangs out with a sober man who overpowers her? Not all rape cases are alcohol related.

      • For those, there's the real police department. They can do things the campus police department can't do -- like "send someone to jail", or "be responsible for applying the due process guarantees that our constitution insists we provide to everyone (including accused and/or actual rapists)".

    • by jsepeta ( 412566 )

      because a man never raped another man?

  • While I strongly believe this is a Bad Idea(tm) of epic proportions with a list of unintended consequences that seemingly has no end, after my initial visceral reaction, I am left to wonder. What led anyone, or group of anyone's, to think this was the answer? Even assuming we are all Good People(tm), do they believe someone will report an incident just because they can do some anonymously? Okay, so we'll put their potential targets on notice but, the report isn't really actionable. The attacker will sti

  • When I was in college oh so many years ago, this was a problem; guess it's still going on now.

    Anyhow, some student activists (turned out to be just a couple of students with access to a photocopier and a stapler) put up posters around campus. The posters had a photo of a guy with prison bars clipart overlaid and the subject tagline below. Whether the photo was actually of a student currently enrolled was never revealed.

    Their argument was "he has a penis. therefore he is a *potential* rapist. no lie; no

  • 'We're all guilty of pressing send on an angry text or email that, had we had to put it into an actual letter and proofread, we probably wouldn't have sent,'

    Ah, lawyers, thinking since they represent the highest infallibility standard, they can speak for all humanity?

    Did you ever sent an inappropriately angry email or text? I don't recall that I ever had that problem.

  • Campus rapes? You mean like the one that occurred at the University of Virginia? Except that it never occurred. And the press is still treating the accuser like she is some sort of victim when the real victims are the young men that were falsely accused. If i were one of those guys I would be suing that devious bitch to high heaven.

    It's just too easy to make false accusations without any real consequences. I could see this sort of system very easily used as revenge or blackmail.

  • I'd think that social media would give women more ability to take a stand against their rapists, outing them for criminal, immoral, and reckless behavior.

  • Ladies always taking a couple friends along when venturing out will solve this. Their names are Mr. Smith and Mr. Wesson.

    It has been proven over and over that citizens carrying the means of self defense greatly deters violent attack against them. The fatal flaw in this is the "defenseless victim" being present. Eliminate the defenseless victim by allowing her some effective defense. Only firearms are effective in all situations. Some a-hole hopped up on PCP won't even notice pepper spray. Tasers

    • Some a-hole hopped up on PCP won't even notice pepper spray.

      It had better be a pretty big handgun, maybe something like this [alloutdoor.com], otherwise they likely would just shake it off [washingtonpost.com] if they are on PCP.

  • Don't drink and do carry a taser and pepper spray. Who thinks my strategy is more effective?
    • by Cederic ( 9623 )

      Because a violent attacker with greater strength and size could never remove those items from you and use them against you.

      No, I think I'd prefer alternate strategies.

      • My taser looks like a flashlight. That's because it is a flashlight. Good luck identifying it or knowing it's in my pocket. And no, they couldn't likely take 2 items off opposite sides of my body at the same time nor know that they were there.
  • by peter303 ( 12292 ) on Thursday April 16, 2015 @11:57AM (#49486203)
    If someone loses their employment becasue this app is misused to punish someone, is the author liable? Common carriers are generally immune to the content passed through them. ISPs are partially immune. But DRM, drug trades, underage porn without due dilligence can get them in trouble. But what about software authors?
  • Why are rapists getting the chance to be repeat offenders and what can we do about that?
    Rapists, especially of minors, deserve the worst our criminal justice system can dish out, more so than your run of the mill murderer, IMO.

I've noticed several design suggestions in your code.

Working...